Mold poisoning is a term sometimes used to refer to a set of medical symptoms of mold exposure. Most types of mold aren’t really poisonous. Some types of mold produce chemical compounds called mycotoxins that are toxic, however, and they can cause serious health problems.
Exposure to mycotoxins produced by mold can cause a wide range of symptoms, including:
See your doctor if you experience any of the above symptoms, especially if these symptoms last for more than a few days and don’t respond to typical over-the-counter treatments or home remedies. If you think you have a respiratory infection, like bronchitis or pneumonia, you need to see your doctor as soon as possible.
Let your doctor know if you think your symptoms might be a result of mold poisoning. It won’t always affect treatment, but sometimes it may. If your doctor thinks mold is causing or contributing to your symptoms, he or she will probably recommend having the mold removed from the home as soon as possible. Treatment may be of limited effectiveness if you continue to be exposed to mold.
Symptoms of mold exposure are not usually an emergency, but in some instances, you should seek immediate medical treatment. Go directly to the nearest emergency room or call 911 if you:
Let the emergency room staff know if you think your symptoms might be related to mold exposure.
Keep in mind the fact that most doctors have an answering service and a health care professional is on call 24 hours a day, so if you’re not sure if you need immediate care or can wait to make an appointment at your doctor’s office, call the office any time, day or night, for advice.
The symptoms described above can all be caused by exposure to mold, but they can all be caused by other things, too. It can be difficult to determine whether mold poisoning is causing your symptoms or if something else is going on. Let your doctor know if you’ve been exposed to mold in the home, as that information can aid your doctor in making a diagnosis.
If you’re not sure if you’ve been exposed to mold or not, we recommend having a professional come in to test your home for mold. You can pick up mold test kits in many home improvement stores, but they aren’t always accurate, especially if the test isn’t conducted exactly right. A professional knows exactly how to conduct the tests, and where in the home to test for mold, so you’ll get a much more accurate result. A professional can even identify the type of mold growing in your home, which may help your doctor in making a diagnosis and prescribing the most effective treatment for you. Follow the link to find a local professional that can test your home for mold.